Meet The Team

SIMON

Simon Chaplin

Managing Director

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

All my life. I was fortunate enough to grow up in a furniture family so even though I was not working, I was learning through osmosis! Chaplins was founded in 1993 by my late father James Chaplin. I took over the running of the company in 2005 after his retirement from the industry.

How many staff?

At present we have about 30 full time employees over the various departments of retail, contract, distribution, marketing and accounts.

Where is it based?

Chaplins operates out of 2 retail locations. Our flagship 25,000 sq ft showroom in Hatch End and our trade showroom in the Design Centre Chelsea Harbour. We also have a sister company based in Clerkenwell that deals with our commercial projects and finally our distribution centre in St Albans.

What is your best selling product?

We do not have a “best selling product” since our range is so diverse working with over 150 different international brands. Our unique offering is that every project we work on is tailored to the individual needs of the client.

Who inspires you?

I am extremely lucky to have had influence from many “pioneers” of the contemporary furniture market who have all taught me something about how I should approach life. From Vladimir Kagan with his youthful exuberance to Piero Busnelli who made me listen to the bells as our wine glasses toasted. All of these “great” men have one common trait, PASSION.

How do you choose what makes it in-store?

Working with so many different brands, we are continually editing collections to stand together. We work on the assumption that every piece that makes it into the store can stand on a podium on its own merit and meet 3 criteria – its own story, longevity in design, and quality.

I hope you are enjoying the online Chaplins experience and look forward to welcoming you into one of our inspirational showrooms.

Ask Simon a question: simon@chaplins.co.uk


PETER_n

Peter Chaplin

Sales Manager

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

14 years

What is your favourite piece and why?

Ron Arad’s PizzaKobra Light. Calling it a lamp would be underselling it. The versatile design allows you to have it flat like a pizza or standing tall and proud like a cobra ready to strike.

What is your area of speciality?

The modern classics. My vast experience means I have sold most of the iconic products during my time here at Chaplins.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

The emergence of interiors that combine the basic and old with the modern and the high-tech.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

A property developer… because I have also got a passion for contemporary architecture.

Ask Peter a question: peter@chaplins.co.uk


DENIS

Denis Barclay

Sales Manager

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

I have worked in the industry since 1987 and have designed, made and assembled fitted furniture at various stages in my career.

What is your favourite piece and why?

The Barrel Chair by Frank Lloyd Wright. I like it because of it’s simple straight lines and the way it forms a shield around the table.

What is your area of speciality?

I specialise in custom made modular furniture. Anything unusual or difficult – if it doesn’t exist I create it.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

Multifunctional furniture with an interaction with technology (Smart Furniture). A good example is a side table which features both lighting and a control panel for operating other electrical objects within the house using wifi.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

I would be working in the open, near the sea. I applied once to look after the channel island of Brequo for a year, which is coincidentally owned by the Barclay Brothers – unfortunately no relations!

Ask Denis a question: d.barclay@chaplins.co.uk


LUDOVIC

Ludovic Aublanc

Head of Contract Sales & Visual Merchandising

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

17 years

What is your favourite piece and why?

Charles and Ray Eames Lounge Chair. Growing up I always had to fight my father to sit on it so it constantly brings back these sweet childhood moments to me. Over 50 years after it was designed it’s simple beauty and comfort still wins me over. I also have a fetish for modern lighting, especially Bulb by Ingo Maurer.

What is your area of speciality?

My passion for design, extensive product knowledge and my ability to understand my clients needs.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

I’d like to think that great interiors are timeless. One’s interior should reflect one’s personality and lifestyle more than current trends. That said, this year we will see vibrant accent colours illuminating chic tones of greys and browns.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

An architect so that I would design structures around furniture to create perfect harmony.

Ask Ludovic a question: ludovic@chaplins.co.uk


LORETTA

Loretta Tansey

Sales/Designer

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

15 years

What is your favourite piece and why?

My favourite range of furniture is the Cube by Interlubke. It is a cabinet range that can be applied to living, dining, bedroom and office areas and is available in a wide range of matt and high gloss lacquer finishes with the possibility of having wooden tops.

What is your area of speciality?

I specialise in fitted furniture and like technically challenging projects.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

I see storage cabinets in living rooms, home offices, etc becoming slimmer and more for aesthetic reasons than functionality. We are seeing more hidden technology entering into the market so there will be no need for deep storage.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

Montessori school teacher.

Ask Loretta a question: loretta@chaplins.co.uk


MICHELLE

Michelle Nisbett

International Sales

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

18 years

What is your favourite piece and why?

Anything by the Dutch lighting manufacturer Brand van Edmond as I am a big fan of art without constraints!

What is your area of speciality?

Export, garden furniture and lighting.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

Clients are showing more interest and willingness to invest in their gardens to create comfortable, entertaining extensions of their home.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

A Bond girl! My love of fast cars, city breaks and cocktails would make me the perfect candidate!

Ask Michelle a question: michelle@chaplins.co.uk


STEPHANIE

Stephanie Mandret

Sales Consultant

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

17 years

What is your favourite piece and why?

The Togo Sofa by Ligne Roset because of its unique design, concept and comfort. It is ideal for both single and family life. Fun, relaxing and impossible to copy!

What is your area of speciality?

The Ligne Roset Collection

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

Scandinavian design and furniture made from raw materials will grow in modern furniture helping to create a more natural environment.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

I would be working for UNICEF or UNITED NATIONS, travelling the world, helping under privileged people. I speak several languages and am well travelled.

Ask Stephanie a question: s.mandret@chaplins.co.uk


MELVIN

Melvin Brown

Sales Consultant

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

14 years

What is your favourite piece and why?

Conseta sofa by COR. It’s such a simple and streamlined design which is also extremely comfortable. Many trends have come and gone but this sofa continues to look relevant and fresh.

What is your area of speciality?

My people skills and patience when working on large projects which are constantly changing.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

Vibrant statement pieces to help enhance more classic interiors.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

Chef and DJ, I love my food and music!

Ask Melvin a question: m.brown@chaplins.co.uk


PAUL

Paul Hart

Sales/Designer

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

21 years

What is your favourite piece and why?

Impossible to say really, there are so many.. I’m a fan of post war Italian design (1950s – 1970s); Vico Magistretti, Joe Colombo, Tobia Scarpa, Mario Bellini, Gio Ponti, Marco Zanuso amongst others. I was once given a ‘Spider’ table light, designed by Joe Colombo in 1966 and produced by Oluce. We have some modern pieces at home but the ‘Spider’ table light is probably the one I covet most for its ‘industrial’ design, metal cut-out diffuser, exposed bulb and oversized ‘bakelite’ adjustment screw. I’ve sold a lot of system/modular furniture through the years – Italian manufacturer Porro is my favourite with many of their designs by architect, Piero Lissoni. Porro apply a beautifully clean lined, crisp aesthetic to their furniture which I’ve always loved, the quality too is also very high; their ‘Storage’ wardrobe range being a good example.

What is your area of speciality?

Modular furniture – wardrobes, bookcases, media units etc. I always enjoy the design process; working through with clients their initial ideas to finished solutions that look great and fulfil their needs. I have gained a wide general knowledge of modem furniture and like putting this to use when tasked with sourcing a feature pendant light or a standalone armchair for example.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

I am not a big believer in trends; I think great design always stands the test of time and will be here in years to come, as proved by many of the 20th Century modern classics that are still in production today. German designer Dieter Rams put it very well in his ‘ten principles for good design’.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

If I wasn’t selling modern furniture I would be working in the photographic industry, combining my passions for film photography, classic Vespa scooters, cars and motorcycles.

Ask Paul a question: p.hart@chaplins.co.uk


FRANCESCA

Francesca Elia

Sales Consultant

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

I’ve been working in this industry for the past 10 years.

What is your favourite piece and why?

The UP5 lounge chair from B&B Italia because it’s a timeless iconic piece and an amazing fusion between design and sculpture.

What is your area of speciality?

My strength is in creating beautiful settings with a homely feel. When choosing modern furniture it is very important to get the right balance between style and comfort.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

Furniture often follows fashion so I have always got one eye on the catwalk! Whatever it will be you will always find it here at Chaplins!

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

I like to stay fit and healthy so I would have to say a personal trainer.

Ask Francesca a question: f.elia@chaplins.co.uk


FRANCESCO

Francesco Spiga

Sales/Customer Service

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

12 years.

What is your favourite piece and why?

Vitra Polder Sofa – Organic, unique and vibrant with its different colours and shapes. With its distinctively asymmetrical structure offers a diverse approach to seating furniture.

What is your area of speciality?

Solving problems using imagination and creative skills.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

Bold and brash colour clashes, vibrant patterns and mixed materials. Psychedelic colours and clashing palettes for a more natural, organic vibe.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

Running a high end holiday agency in Sardinia.

Ask Francesco a question: f.spiga@chaplins.co.uk


HAMISH

Hamish Britton

Web & Marketing Assistant

 

How long have you worked in the industry?

Since December 2015.

What is your favourite piece and why?

Generally anything by Dedon, the attention to detail, overall vision and the exclusivity of their pieces goes above and beyond anyone else – I mean who has a hanging bed in their garden?

What is your area of speciality?

Web content such as copy-writing and design, marketing and PR.

What will be the next big trend in interiors?

As a smartphone addict, I feel that interior design will somehow integrate app functionality. We can already turn off our gas and electricity from our phone, who says your sofa can’t recline without you simply saying.

If you didn’t sell contemporary furniture, what would you be?

I would probably be somewhere in retail management or personal training, if I wasn’t unhealthy!

Ask Hamish a question: h.britton@chaplins.co.uk